It had been two and a half days since landing in Colorado and we hadn’t really climbed up any hills or hillocks. But Ajinkya made sure that Chinu and I don’t go back home without stepping foot on the summit of a small mountain by deciding to take us on a hike to Mount Sanitas, a place where all Boulderites love to jog, hike or just walk their dog in the morning.
A group of us took the bus (public transport) from Ajinkya’s home to the point closest to the trailhead. Bus dropped us about 8 blocks away from the trailhead for Mount Sanitas. It was a bright sunny day and the weather was pleasant. Mount Sanitas got its name from Boulder Colorado Sanitarium and Hospital, built in the late 1800’s. According to the government website, “The sanitorium was one of a series of John Harvey Kellogg’s Battle Creek, Michigan, Sanatoriums. Kellogg, a Seventh-Day Adventist, was one of the leaders of a growing movement in ‘health building and training’ called the Western Health Reform Institute. The institute promoted ‘hydro-therapy, exercise and a vegetarian diet’ as the way to good health.”
The hike was quite easy as the trail is well cut and there are many joggers, walkers and hikers on the trail most of the time. The best part of the hike is not the summit, but the views of Boulder and Eastern Plains that one keeps getting on one side of the mountain while walking on the trail. Entire hike was not more than 3-4 miles long and we went from an elevation of 5520 ft to 6843 ft. Mount Sanitas is a type of geological formation called Hogbacks (a long narrow ridge or a series of hills gets formed due to tectonic forces that create convex folds on the earth’s surface. The folds erode away leaving behind hard ridges, called Hogbacks). ( Wikipedia, ProTrails.com).
As most of the trail is along the ridgeline that leads to the top of Mount Sanitas, one gets to enjoy views on both side of the mountain and they are very pretty. Because of winter season, all the tress were dead and Boulder looked like a town of brown trees but I can only imagine how beautiful it would look during summer and fall seasons. Clear blue skies and panoramic views of Boulder made our day. At times, we would just stop, find a good rock to sit on and enjoy the scenery.
There was some snow at the top and because it was kind of cold, we did not stay there for too long. This was going to be my first and the last trip in the hills. Trying to look at the views for as long as I could, I came down the mountain with the others. For sure, this was not going to be my only trip to Colorado.